Sunday, March 08, 2009

Chris Brown: Turn your apology into a cash-cow

An eyecatching headline from the New York Daily News, eager to continue running the Rihanna-Brown story round the block some more:

Experts tell Chris Brown to sing 'sorry' song for Rihanna to save career

Experts? What experts?
Davia Temin, CEO of Temin and Co.

Ah, yes. There are people who are even more unsavoury than domestic abusers; those who would turn up and try and promote their PR company on the back of a woman being beaten up in a car park.

Given that Davia Temin thinks that offering unsolicited advice to an accused abuser is a neat-o way to promote her business, you might want to approach the rest of her advice with caution. Oh, and a pair of domestic-strength rubber gloves. And an Olympic-sized bargepole:
"Come up with a soulful song about what happened," said Davia Temin, CEO of Temin and Co. "I would use my fame to say, 'Look we are all human and make terrible mistakes.'"

We are all human, aren't we? We have all made mistakes. I'm just not sure that releasing a single about contrition - thereby turning your supposed guilt into a consumer item - isn't just adding to the long lists of terrible mistakes you've made?

Remember: this is a violent attack that left a woman badly beaten. And Davia Temin is suggesting you release a love song about it.
The idea, said Temin, "is to embrace the thing that hurt you the most and turn it into something positive."

Did Temin spend any time - any time at all - reading about domestic violence before she came up with this stuff?
If Brown "were a company," said Temin, "I would say, 'Start a foundation on nonviolent resolution to family squabbles.'"

If he was a dog, I would suggest he starts to help fish children out of wells. If Brown was a machine, retooling to make warning signs and protective clothing.

Seriously, Temin? You think that Brown setting up an organisation which plays to his all-too-public weaknesses would be the way to go? Sure, Betty Ford did well with her Clinic, but she did at least have the grace to dry herself out before offering herself up as some kind of expert at kicking addiction.
Brown, who is just 19, sings for a living, and he needs to understand that "coming back is possible," she said.

"You can come back from pretty much anything," said Temin. "Our country loves people who come back from the brink."

Yeah. Look at the way OJ was able to put that whole stabbing his wife and her lover thing to death behind him.
"The first thing he has to do is apologize again, sincerely," Temin said. "He needs to say, 'Look, I am so sorry any of this happened, that's not who I want to be. I take my role as a role model very seriously.'"

Chris Brown doesn't have a role as a role model. He's a man who appears to have beaten his girlfriend to a bloody pulp.

Is there anyone with a bit more understanding of the situation who might have some insight?
Marilyn Puder-York, a psychologist

Ah, a psychologist. Puder-York might have something a bit more worthwhile to say on the subject than a PR person.
"The fact that she [Rihanna] is standing by his side is significant," she said. "That she went back to him takes him off the hook a little."

Seriously? You're a psychologist, and your thought is that Rihanna going back is good for him, rather than bad for her?
Puder-York quickly added, "It does not excuse what happened."

"But for the public, it raises the question, 'Who am I to condemn him if the person he is accused of victimizing is not condemning him?'" she said.

You don't think the public might be more likely to think "why do so many women go back to the people who abuse them?"

Still, at least this is just a space-filling article in a newsletter. No real PR company would try and spin domestic violence into a career-saving publicity campaign, would they?
His handlers have denied a Chicago Sun-Times report that they have launched a career-saving campaign dubbed "Project Mea Culpa."